UK partners propose USV for windfarm site surveys

Photo: HydroSurv

UK-based unmanned surface vehicle (USV) manufacturer HydroSurv Unmanned Survey and marine technology specialist Sonardyne have agreed to collaborate on a project that seeks to support clients in the offshore wind industry.

Under the project, a HydroSurv USV will be paired with intelligent seafloor and vessel-mounted instruments from Sonardyne, alongside cloud-based services, to provide an end-to-end seabed-data-to-shore service. The instruments will include an ultra-short baseline (USBL) acoustic positioning system and hybrid acoustic-INS navigation instrument, which will provide navigational redundancy both for when GNSS is compromised and where DVL bottom lock is out of range.

Used in combination with Sonardyne’s seafloor sensors and access to cloud-based services, the package will provide an integrated suite of capabilities to maximise the use of USVs in remote offshore environments.

Key elements of the new project include a self-transiting USV, acoustic positioning of and data harvesting from seabed instruments, real-time gathering of geo-referenced current profile data, and live relay of information to operatives onshore through secure cloud-based systems.

The project will also demonstrate the ability to overcome potential navigational limitations working in and around wind farms.

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